Cleaning up….The Natural Way!

Making cleaning products that are safe for your family & the environment.

Liquid Laundry Soap February 28, 2012

Filed under: Laundry — amberjohnstonphotography @ 11:27 pm

Many people are now making their own laundry soap.  Some have expressed interest in making a liquid version because they are afraid to use powdered in their HE machines.  Here is the recipe for the liquid version.  PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THIS MAKES 10 GALLONS OF SOAP!

 

1 bar soap (fels naptha is best)

1 c. borax

1 c. super washing soda

1 c. baking soda

1 c. SUN oxygen cleaner

1 cordless drill with CLEAN extra long paint stir attached

1 (5) gallon bucket

1 plastic funnel

something to store 10 gallons of detergent in.

 

  • Fill the 5 gallon bucket with 2 1/2 gallons of HOT tap water.
  • Melt the bar of soap and 1/2 gallon of water on the stove (it takes less time if it is grated).
  • Mix the Borax, Super Washing Soda, Baking Soda, and SUN cleaner into the bucket.
  • Add melted soap to the bucket.
  • Fill the rest of the bucket with HOT water.
  • Mix the ingredients thoroughly with the drill and paint stir stick.
  • Let sit overnight to gel

The next day, fill your storage container (recycled gallon jugs, vinegar jugs, store bought detergent bottles, etc) 1/2 way with water and the rest of the way with the gel mixture.

Use 1/4 (for HE) and 1/2 (for traditional) cups of the soap per load of laundry.

 

THE GEL AND WATER WILL SEPARATE.  SHAKE WELL BEFORE EACH USE!

 

If you don’t have enough storage space for the whole 10 gallons you can split the mixture into 1/2 or even 1/3 to make less.

 

HAPPY CLEANING!

 

 

CLOTH DIAPER LAUNDRY DETERGENT January 23, 2012

Filed under: Laundry — amberjohnstonphotography @ 5:24 am
Tags: , ,

Several mommies in my “Mother to Mother” support group use cloth diapers and several are making the switch from disposable to cloth.  After seeing several new moms ask what to wash the diapers in, I figured I would share this recipe with them.  Even though I myself do not have a child in diapers, I have come across this recipe for a wonderful homemade, CHEAP, natural detergent.

Recipe:

1 cup Borax

1 cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda

1 cup Baking Soda

1 cup SUN oxygen cleaner (do not use oxy-clean, it has other chemicals in it that could damage the diapers.)

(optional) 20 drops of your favorite essential oil

just mix all together in a bag or other air tight container and shake.  Use 1-2 TBSP per load of diapers.  Follow wash with a rinse in White Vinegar.  NEVER use commercial fabric softener on cloth diapers as it will cause the diaper to be less absorbent.

Any questions?  Please feel free to ask!

 

Electronics Cleaner October 17, 2011

Filed under: Electronics — amberjohnstonphotography @ 2:58 pm

Flat Screen tvs and other electronics are very expensive and require special cleaning.  To clean your flat screen tv just spray white vinegar on a clean lint free soft cloth (like a microfiber cloth or cloth diaper) and gently wipe the screen.  NEVER spray the screen, even when using commercial cleaners because liquid can cause internal damage.   Never use a cleaner that contains ammonia or alcohol because it can damage the screen and cause discoloration.

 

Bathroom Cleaner October 14, 2011

Filed under: Bathroom — amberjohnstonphotography @ 9:59 pm

I was reading different recipe’s yesterday for all purpose cleaners and I figured I would try my hand at making my own recipe using the best of all I had read.  This cleaner is VERY STRONG so make sure if you are going to be using it outside of the bathroom you dilute it really good.

AGAIN…THIS CLEANER IS VERY STRONG!!!!!!

 

Recipe:

1/2 cup white vinegar

1/2 cup baking soda

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/2 a gallon of HOT water

 

MIX ALL OF THE LIQUID INGREDIENTS TOGETHER FIRST!!! Then SLOWLY add the baking soda.  If you do not do it this way, the mixture will make a volcano in your house.

 

If you would like to use this in other rooms of your house dilute it in at least a full gallon of water.

 

Automatic Dishwasher Powder

Filed under: Kitchen — amberjohnstonphotography @ 5:58 pm

If you are like me, you think a dishwasher is the best invention since sliced bread.  I found a recipe for all natural dishwasher powder and believe it or not, it works better than my cascade complete packs.  This recipe makes A LOT of powder so you will need a 5 gallon bucket to mix it in.

Things you need

1-5 gallon bucket

1-clean garbage bag

1-container to store your powder in

1-box Borax

1-4lb Super washing Soda

3 cups Epsom Salt

24 packs unsweetened lemonade drink mix (great value brand is $0.12 at walmart) -OR- A rather large container of Citric Acid (it is supposed to be with the canning stuff at supermarkets but I could not find it)

1- container Lemi-Shine rinse aid

Directions:

Line the bucket with the clean garbage bag and pour in the Borax, Super Washing Soda, Epsom Salt, and Drink Mix (it will stain your dishwasher dispenser yellow but will not harm your dishes).  Mix all together and transfer as much as you can fit into a storage container.  When getting ready to run the dishwasher, sprinkle some (about 1 Tablespoon) of the Lemi-Shine in the bottom of your dishwasher and put 2-3 Tablespoons of the detergent in the dispenser.  Run as normal.

The powder will cake together in the container after a while, so every day or so give it a good shake to keep this from happening.  You can also add 2 cups of dry white rice to the mixture and it will keep it from caking, it is safe on your dishwasher so it will not cause any problems doing so. This recipe makes a huge batch that will last about 9 months to a year depending on how often you run your dishwasher.  The only thing you will have to purchase before then will be the Lemi-Shine.

Please remember!! No matter what detergent you use (store bought or homemade) in your dishwasher it is important to use a dishwasher cleaner once a month to keep limescale from building up in your water lines.  It is no fun having dirty water back up into your floor…trust me, I know from experience!

 

This is everything you need to make the powder. Please note that you need 24 packs of the lemonade mix and I only have one pictured.

The finished product. This is not all of it, the rest of it is in a garbage bag for storage. All of it would not fit in my container.

 

Dishwashing Powder October 13, 2011

Filed under: Kitchen — amberjohnstonphotography @ 7:27 pm

PLEASE NOTE!!! THIS IS NOT FOR USE IN A DISHWASHER, THAT IS A SEPARATE RECIPE!!

Washing dishes is a CHORE for me.  I hate wet food and get slightly sick just thinking about it, but I was excited to try this new recipe for dish washing soap.  I tried it and I absolutely LOVE it.  My dishes were clean and shiny in a flash and the grease just melted away from my pots and pans.  I will definitely be making this instead of using the harsh dish washing liquid that dries my hands out and leaves a soapy taste on my dishes.

This powder will not make bubbles in water!

Recipe:

1 cup Borax

1 cup Super Washing Powder

1/2 cup Salt

1/3 cup vinegar (added later to water, not to powder mixture)

Directions:

Mix all of the powdered ingredients together and store in airtight container until needed.  Add 2 tablespoons of powder to hot water for washing dishes and add 1/3 cup vinegar to water to help cut grease.  Wash dishes and rinse in warm water.

 

Dryer Sheets

Filed under: Laundry — amberjohnstonphotography @ 3:25 pm

Right now unfortunately I am still using store bought fabric softener because I don’t want to waste what I have left in the house.  However I am not using it the traditional way!  I made reusable dryer sheets that work just as well & I won’t have to buy fabric softener for a LONG time.  I am trying to be more green so after I use all of the softener I have at home I am going to try a similar recipe using essential oils.

Recipe:

1 cap of laundry softener

1/2 gallon of water

1 container with a lid

3-4 lint free cloths

Directions:

Mix the fabric softener and water together in the container.  Drop in the lint free cloths and leave them there until you need them.  When drying a load of laundry take out a cloth, ring it mostly dry and throw it in the dryer with your clothes.  When your dry cycle has ended and you take your clothes out, just throw the cloth back into the mix.

This works just as well as store bought dryer sheets but last pretty much FOREVER!

UPDATE JAN 23, 2012: I ORIGINALLY POSTED THIS ON OCTOBER 13, 2011 & I AM STILL USING MY LEFT OVER FABRIC SOFTENER.  I HAVE GONE THROUGH 3 CAP-FULL’S SINCE OCTOBER AND I WASH 10+ LOADS OF LAUNDRY A WEEK.  IT SEEMS THIS BOTTLE IS GOING TO LAST FOREVER.  JUST AS SOON AS IT FINALLY DOES RUN OUT I WILL TRY & SHARE A RECIPE FOR DRYER SHEETS USING ESSENTIAL OILS.  I WILL NOT POST ANYTHING I HAVE NOT USED MYSELF.

 

UPDATE FEB 28, 2012:  I STILL HAVE NOT MADE A DENT IN MY FABRIC SOFTENER BOTTLE SO I AM GOING TO ADD THE NEW RECIPE BELOW!

 

NATURAL FABRIC SOFTENER:

When washing laundry, add 1/3 to 1/2 a cup of white vinegar to the rinse cycle.  This will remove any residue from your clothing and leave the fibers naturally soft.  For those of you who are worried about static and prefer a scent to your laundry, simply make a couple balls of aluminum foil and throw them in the dryer.  Also get a lint free rag and put 8-10 drops of your favorite essential oil on it and throw it in with your clothing.  I do this with Lavender Oil for my son’s bed clothes every wash.  It calms him right down and helps him sleep at night.

Note to pet owners: PLEASE BE AWARE THAT CATS ARE VERY SENSITIVE TO ESSENTIAL OILS, ESPECIALLY LAVENDER.  PLEASE RESEARCH FURTHER BEFORE ADDING ESSENTIAL OILS TO YOUR LAUNDRY IF YOU ARE A PET OWNER.

 

HAPPY CLEANING!!

 

 
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